Clinical Psychology Programs

Helping people deal with problems ranging from short-term personal issues to chronic conditions, clinical psychologists assess, diagnose, and treat mental, emotional, and behavioral disorders and enable people to make positive changes in their lives. A career in this field can be ideal for those who love to help people as well as those with strong communication and interpersonal skills.

  1. What does a Clinical Psychologist do?
  2. How to become a Clinical Psychologist?
  3. Program Course Focus Areas
  4. Specialties in Clinical Psychology
  5. Clinical Psychologist Job Outcomes
  6. Where do Clinical Psychologists work?


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What does a Cinical Psychologist do?

Clinical psychologist uses a number of methods in order to help people. These may include interviewing patients, giving diagnostic tests, and providing psychotherapy. Some of these professionals also focus on certain groups of people, such as the elderly or children. A clinical psychologist may specialize in a particular field of psychology such as health psychology. These professionals study how psychological factors affect health and cause illness. Neuropsychologists, on the other hand, study the relation between the brain and behavior.
As a clinical psychologist, you will be required to see people with psychological issues such as phobias, anxiety etc. You will have to:

  1. Assess patients needs through various methods
  2. Decide on the most appropriate form of treatment
  3. Plan a treatment
  4. Carry out research
  5. Provide counseling and support

Students who wish to pursue a career in clinical psychology need to complete a graduate education. They must also obtain a license to practice.

How to become a Clinical Psychologist?

Generally, clinical psychologists hold a doctoral degree. You can pursue a PhD in psychology or a Doctor of Psychology (Psy.D.) degree. While a PhD is research based that includes an exam and a dissertation based on original research, the Psy.D. is a clinical degree generally based on practical work. These degrees may also be offered online.  Students can also enroll in the hybrid programs that allow them to take some classes online and complete other coursework on-campus.
If you wish to enroll in a doctoral in clinical psychology, you must hold a bachelor's degree from an accredited school. Some programs may require you to complete coursework in introductory psychology, experimental psychology, and statistics while others require a master’s degree in psychology. Other requirements for admission may vary by program.

Program Course Focus Areas

A clinical psychology program will instruct you in a variety of subject areas that would enable you to develop skills and knowledge essential to working in areas such as assessment, research, consultation and management. You would be able to hone skills, acquire knowledge and values, necessary to develop working relationship with clients. You will also learn how to conduct research. In addition to coursework, you will be required to complete an internship as well as a dissertation. Some of the courses of study may include:

  • Clinical psychopathology
  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy
  • Behavioral assessment
  • Clinical neuropsychology
  • Psychobiology
  • Psychopharmacology
  • Social bases of behavior

Clinical psychology programs may also include topics in addictive disorders, marriage and family counseling, and research methods in psychology.

Specialties in Clinical Psychology

There are a number of subfields within the realm of clinical psychology. Those interested in specializing in a particular area of clinical psychology have the following options open to them: 

  • Neuropsychology
  • Health psychology
  • Geropsychology

Neuropsychology deals with the relation between the brain and behavior. Experts in this field work with those suffering from head injuries and strokes. Health psychology refers to the social and physical aspects affecting health. Counseling to promote healthy living is part of this angle of clinical psychology. Geropsychology deals with the psychological issues faced by the elderly.  Some clinical psychologists may work only with children or young adults.

Clinical Psychologist Job Outcomes

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment of clinical psychologists is expected to grow at the rate of 11% from 2012 to 2022, which is about as fast as the average for all other occupations. Increased demand for psychological services in schools, hospitals, mental health centers, and related settings is expected to drive the demand for these professionals.

According to the data published by O*NET OnLine, there were about 145,000 clinical psychologists in the U.S. in 2012. Between 2012 and 2022, another 55,900 clinical psychologists will be required to look after people with different psychological issues.

Where do Clinical Psychologists work?

Clinical psychologists generally work in a number of settings including:

  1. Hospitals
  2. Mental health facilities
  3. Private organizations
  4. Universities
  5. Schools

Some clinical psychologists work in research organizations and academic institutions where they are responsible for conducting research. Besides, police departments also hire clinical psychologists; military requires the services of these professionals as. Additionally, some psychologists also set up their own private practice, while others may work on part-time basis as independent consultants.
These professionals may work during evenings or even weekends. Clinical psychologists who work in hospitals, nursing homes, or related settings may also work evening and weekend shifts.

 

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Q:What are the benefits of pursuing an online clinical psychology degree?

A:An online degree in psychology will allow students to prepare for psychology careers without having to attend campus based classes. There are a number of benefits one can get by enrolling in online programs such as the following: low costs, flexibility, no time restraints, and self-paced course structures. Online education is suitable for those who not have the time or access to campus schools.

Q:What are some of the clinical psychology online degrees available?

A:Online clinical psychology degrees are available at several academic levels such as master's of science in clinical science degree, while doctoral programs include doctor of philosophy in psychology and doctor of psychology. These degrees offer various clinical psychology concentrations so students can align their academic goals with the programs they pursue. These specializations include neuropsychology, geropsychology and health psychology.

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